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ND SOFTBALL: Irish win two games in Buckeye Invitational

Joe Meixell | Monday, March 21, 2005

The hits keep on coming for the Irish. Even poor weather could not cool down the Notre Dame softball team’s red-hot bats. The Irish outhit opponents 28 to 12 in three games.The Irish are coming off a spring break trip in which they went 6-1 and captured the Hawaii Invitational Tournament. Notre Dame went 2-1 in this weekend’s Buckeye Invitational Tournament in Columbus, Ohio, after having their first game cancelled against hosting Ohio State. “The weather has no effect, we are used to bad weather, it should never be a problem,” Irish coach Deanna Gumpf said.The Irish beat the Eastern Michigan Eagles 4-1 in their third game late Sunday afternoon. The team was carried in part by the efforts of pitcher Heather Booth, who allowed only two hits in seven innings, and senior Liz Hartmann, who went 3-4 with 3 RBI in the tournament’s final game. Hartmann would amass a .700 batting average for the tournament, driving in seven RBI and scoring two runs.Earlier in the day, the Irish beat the Oakland Grizzlies 8-0 in only five innings due to the mercy rule. Pitcher Steffany Steinglem earned the win and added to her impressive tournament totals of 19 strikeouts while allowing only three earned runs in 10 innings. Hartmann had another big outing with 3 RBI and a run. “Liz Hartmann was absolutely on fire, she was unbeatable and nothing could get by her,” Gumpf said.In Notre Dame’s first game, they were tied 4-4 with Marshall going into the final inning when an error and a three-run two-out homerun lead to the end of the Irish’s five-game winning streak. The Herd improved to 12-8 after winning their first-ever meeting with Notre Dame. “We got better as we played, we hit very well but we made a lot of mistakes … some that cost us dearly,” Gumpf said.The Irish are now 13-8 and return home for their first home game of the season Wednesday against Western Michigan.